Geek couture brand Her Universe returned to San Diego Comic Con this year for their second fashion show competition in what Eckstein has previously stated she hopes becomes an SDCC tradition. 25 designers from around the country competed for the top prize: a chance to design a geeky-themed collection for retailer Hot Topic. The panel of judges for this year’s competition included last year’s Judges Choice Winner Amy Beth Christenson and Audience Choice Winner Andrew MacLaine, as well as Jennifer Tisdale, sister of Ashley Tisdale, the President and founder of Blondie Girl productions, who was sporting a “hipster Ariel” inspired outfit.
In addition to the design competition, the audience was treated to an exhibition of current and future Her Universe collections, including the upcoming Studio Ghibli inspired collection that will be debuting in Hot Topic stores this all. Further teases included mentions of an upscale Doctor Who collection, as well as collections inspired by The Nightmare Before Christmas and American Horror Story. Eckstein also stated that those who missed out on the Avengers collection may be able to get that beloved Tony Stark bomber jacket after all, as Hot Topic is planning to re-release the collection at a later date. Unfortunately, there was no announcement on whether Torrid, Hot Topic’s Plus-Sized sister retailer, would be re-releasing their sold out Captain America, Loki, and Black Widow dresses.
Her Universe also made a clear stand that geeks of all sizes are welcome by their choice of models. The Her Universe collections were modeled by volunteers of all sizes, and featured several plus sized women, including the very first model to hit the catwalk. More than that, the competing designers were given the choice of modeling their own designs, or having a model wear them, which meant that the runway featured a range of body types and aesthetics. Finally, while the judges deliberated, audience members were invited to strut their stuff on the catwalk to the applause of a packed house.
Whether there will be another fashion show next year at SDCC remains to be seen, as Eckstein announced at the event that Her Universe was partnering with Blondie Girl productions and Lionsgate Digital to create a reality series based on the fashion show to Comic-Con International’s streaming-on-demand channel next year.